Sailing Away

Well, today’s the day. VACATION DAY! J and I are sailing out on a one-week Caribbean cruise, taking us all over the place. I’ll be taking a break from charting and temping (and hopefully, obsessing) while we’re away, so this blog will be largely unattended until I get back.
In the spirit of all things tropical, enjoy these Pina Colada Cupcakes – adapted from Martha Stewart.

Cupcakes:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
Zest of 3 lemons (about 3 tablespoons)
2 tbsp pineapple juice (I used the juice from a can of crushed pineapple)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup milk + 1 tbsp lemon juiceFrosting:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
3-4 cups icing sugar
lemon extract or pineapple juice
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Cupcakes:
In a small bowl, combine 1 cup of milk and 1 tbsp lemon juice (or use buttermilk, if you have it) Let stand. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, until thoroughly combined. Add the lemon zest, pineapple juice, and vanilla. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients slowly, alternating with the ‘buttermilk’ mixture. Mix until combined, but don’t overmix.

Pour batter into a greased or lined cupcake tray, and bake at 325 for about 20-25 minutes. Let cool.

Frosting:
In the bowl of a mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy. Slowly begin adding icing sugar, about a 1/4 cup at a time. After each cup, add about a tsp of pineapple juice. There is no strict recipe for this – keep adding icing sugar and pineapple juice until you get the consistency you desire for piping or spreading. Once cupcakes are iced, roll the tops in shredded coconut.

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